Politicians And Their Four-Legged Friends
Arguably among the most depicted animals in the world, the Queen’s five dogs represent the upper tier of a modern class of pets which is the political animal. The political animal is a media star who travels in armored limousines or private jets, sniffing at state guests and going on photo ops. You see it on TV, in daily newspapers, magazines and on your own website.
Ironically, the Welsh Corgi doesn’t seem very suitable for this at first glance. The bat-like ears are very triangular, the head is a sphere, the body is a rectangle and the legs are four blocks. It is like a fur-lined joke of geometry or like a dachshund with a shepherd’s head screwed on. At no point does the Miniature Welsh Sheepdog come across as regal. And yet therein lies the attraction.
A kind of pedestal for the four-legged friend
The appointments that are accepted by the Corgis, who are considered to be lovable and eager to learn, are varied. As mediators between the people and the royal family, the little ambassadors lighten the mood at receptions in Buckingham Palace.
In England, reporting on farm animals has been a natural part of the tabloids for years. Queen Elizabeth II is spearheading a trend that is spreading beyond the island: the dog, the cat, the horse as political accessories. The Queen is the only woman who relies on animals. There are otherwise male heads of state who show themselves with animals.
Politician and dog – a voluntary alliance of convenience
But the animal that has to top the list of political animals in democratic times is the dog. Not just any dog though. Not the shepherd namely but the Labrador.
Even in the biblical parable of the rich glutton and poor Lazarus, it was dogs that licked Lazarus’ sores before he was carried into eternal life by angels. In this storyline, numerous Bible illustrations feature the dog, identifying it as a symbol of fidelity both to the faith and to its master.
The proverbial loyalty of the animal is probably based on a primal human experience. Paleoanthropological research assumes that humans and dogs came together voluntarily. The dog to get food scraps and shelter. Man to have a hunting companion and protector.